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Tuesday September 02, 2014
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Blue House Opens



lot of time learning a skill.

The good news is that Siobhan Lyle opened Blue House in March to fill a related niche. Lyle's mission is to reestablish "that connection that we seem to be losing. It used to be that you would learn sewing or knitting from your mother, your grandmother, your neighbor. So we're trying to fill that void. Our community is teeming with creative people. It's just a matter of collecting them all together in a safe, inviting environment, where there's no expectation of your quality of work or your experience--no intimidation factor."

Lyle respects the self-taught, those who resurrect forgotten crafts, and those who invent new ones with materials at hand. Paper earrings, brooches made of old wool sweaters, and "found art" framed in discarded windows are some of the things for sale in the small consignment gallery, as well as more traditional photography and metal work. Blue House holds workshops and rents studio space by the hour and month.

Though Lyle doesn't consider herself an artist, she does like to "find trash and reclaim it, paint it, up-cycle it." She points out the graceful, narrow display shelves holding artist Maureen O'Brien's purses "made from repurposed fabric." "These shelves are actually bunk bed ladders, three dollars at the ReUse Center, and how purposeful are they?" The question is, of course, rhetorical, delivered with a brisk, satisfied nod.

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